January’s iSeahorse Feature Observation: Denise’s Pygmy Seahorse by ajeffrey

The first iSeahorse Feature Observation of 2015 comes to us from user ajeffrey, who was diving in Komodo National Park. Located in southern Indonesia, the park is apparently a hotspot for pygmy seahorses (recall our July 2014 Feature Observation of multiple Bargibant’s Pygmy seahorses).

Denise’s pygmy seahorse (Hippocampus denise) is so small and well-camouflaged that it was only formally described in 2003. Like other pygmy seahorses, this species is associated with coral hosts that it mimics in appearance. Similar in size and stature to Bargibant's pygmy seahorse, recent research has shown that this species is much less faithful to a single host species and can take up residence on a number of different corals. It also appears to behave more promiscuously than its closest relative.

As would be expected for a recently described species, scientists have thus far obtained very little information about Denise’s pygmy seahorse (the species is listed as Data Deficient on the IUCN Red List). We hope that this and many more sightings like it on iSeahorse will contribute to a better understanding of these amazing tiny creatures.

Publicado el 29 de enero de 2015 a las 10:49 PM por projectseahorse projectseahorse


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